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Samsung’s New Campaign Shows Blind Photographers Pushing Boundaries to Show World’s Beauty

Posted April 18, 2017

How can one capture the beauty if they can’t see the beauty? By feeling it

Over the Horizon‘ is a new campaign for Samsung created by Cheil Worldwide Russia, in partnership with The White Cane, a charity that supports visually-challenged people in Russia.  The campaign aims to inspire ordinary people to push beyond their own comfort zone and understand that daily life has much more to offer than they expect. The campaign features Alexander Zhuravlev – a photographer with only 2% residual vision.


Zhuravlev became blind at the age of 11 as the result of an illness yet he has not let his disabilities stop him. He is a passionate skier, a traveler and an enthusiastic photographer. He lives at full throttle and believes that disability will only hold you back if you allow it to.

During his latest journey, to South Ural, the Russian region famous for its severe climate and beautiful landscape, he took a series of photographs using a Samsung Galaxy smartphone which were used by Cheil Russia to create a social project comprising an online video, a website and a photography exhibition.

Photos shot by Zhuravlev were presented in two forms: one to demonstrate what he could see with 2% vision; the other presenting the full image of the same view as captured by the Samsung phone.

The images were displayed on a project website – horizon.samsung.ru. Features on the website included the innovative special ‘inner sight’ section enabling users to experience the world through Zhuravlev’s restricted vision.

The campaign also featured an exhibition of his images in Moscow’s Lumiere Brothers Center for Photography, where the gallery space was designed to convey the world as ‘seen’ by the photographer, and to guide visitors towards a deeper understanding of how he creates his images.

The project was promoted by the largest visual Shazam search ever used in advertising. Members of the public were able to access the project website by Shazam-ing the 28-storey Samsung smartphone covering the Hydroproject Research Center building, dubbed the biggest “smartphone” in Europe.

DIVERGE talked to the team behind the project to find out more.

Where did the idea for this campaign come from?

Cheil became acquainted accidently with Alexander and he inspired us ‘cause despite everything he was fulfilled by energy and joy of life, meanwhile we meet a lot of people every day, especially millennials, who can’t breathe the life fully, they don’t see their opportunities that are around them.

That’s why we got an idea to tell Alexander’s story to “ordinary” people in order to show them how easily they can unbox themselves because their capabilities are unlimited.

Why is it significant?

There are several reasons:

This is a social project but it’s oriented not on some group of disable people, vice versa it’s oriented on a huge number of ordinary people

The history of Alexander is really inspiring.

This is truly 360 degree campaign, containing of a beautiful motivating video, the biggest DOOH in Europe with the biggest shazam-search in the world, unique experience on the micro-site (we called it “inner sight”, it’s a reflection of Alexander’s sight giving site visitor deeper and more personal experience and perception), exhibition of Alexander photos that included VR experience stand

What role did Shazam play in this?

A great media tool we used on the biggest media façade in Europe to attract additional attention and quicker way to transfer traffic to digital

As hundreds of thousands are seeing our media façade Alexander, blind man, opened eyes to millions

Why was this something Samsung, Shazam and The White Cane passionate about?

For Samsung: the camera is an opportunity to show people how colorful our world is. Samsung Galaxy allows you to look over the horizon of future technologies today. And the cameras of Samsung smartphones allow you to feel the emotions of the photographer and really feel the atmosphere of the place.

For Shazam: Shazam is all about new discoveries and emotions and our social project is all about this. And of course, this project was a bright way to advertise the Shazam’s visual function in the Russian market.

For White cane: they liked this project because we don’t raise issue of blind people problems, we are saying they are complete and fully functional people. The fund mission is a social adaptation of blind people in the society and our project was in the same coordinates system

And of course, there is additional value for White Cane – all proceeds raised  through Alexander photos selling will be donated to White Cane.

Is this something that may be ongoing?

The project is still on-going and will be over by the end of April.


Production Credits:


Creative Group Head: Mitya Usov

Digital Creative Lead: Dmitry Sherbakov

Art Director: Alena Klepikova

Copywriter: Irina Filina

Head of solutions center: Ekaterina Smygina

Content director: Anna Evstratova

Producer: Tania Chepko

Digital producer: Timur Konusbekov

Brand experience manager: Artem Grigoriants

SMM manager: Katia Bondarchuk


Director: Ivan Sosnin

Producer: Tatiana Chepko

Production Company: Red Pepper Film



Samsung Mobile Marketing Director in Russia: Seif El Hakim

Head of marketing communications and collaborative marketing: Svetlana Millina

Marketing manager: Elena Podolskaya